DIY Watering Spike – Theory

DISCLAIMER: All illustrations were done by me using Microsoft Paint and a mouse. You are allowed to laugh at them.

**UPDATE** You can see the implementation of this here.

Watering spikes are hollow plastic spikes that you can attach to a plastic bottle for watering purposes. The idea behind a watering spike is that you deliver the water to the root of the plant and minimize waste of water via evaporation. I have used them for a few years and they have worked perfectly for me. Plus, for some reason, they seem to make it easier to water. If you have never seen a watering spike, Google the term or go to http://www.gardeners.com where they are called Aqua Cones™. By the way, I have seen these sell for as much as $30 dollars for a set of 6. Don’t pay that much. You can find them for much, much less –I paid $9.99 American dollars for a set of six not including shipping.

Or you can pay nothing or very little at all.

Last season, my destructive new puppy Lexie, ate my new 150 feet garden hose and left me with useless sections of 10 to 15 feet long. What follows is a theoretical construction of  watering spikes using sections of garden hose and small rubber balloons.

Why do this? I have used plastic bottles to do this but in a container, I feel that the volume taken up by the bottle could be better used to hold soil. For plants in the ground, a two little bottle buried next to them should work fine.

STEP ONE. Cut a section of garden hose and procure two small rubber balloons.

STEP TWO: Cut the bottom off from one of the balloons.

STEP THREE: Drill or cut holes into section of garden hose. **WARNING!!!** Please be VERY VERY CAREFULL when doing this step. Drilling or cutting into rounded surfaces can be tricky and injury can result. Do not attempt this if you are not an adult.

STEP FOUR: Attach uncut balloon to end of garden hose to act as a water cap.

STEP FIVE: Use cut balloon to cover the connection of the garden hose to the plastic bottle. This step is tricky as you must attach the cut balloon to either the bottle or the garden hose first and then roll the remaining cut balloon over either the bottle or the hose. Also, there are three possibilities when attempting to couple the hose with the bottle:

  1. The hose will be thinner than the mouth of the bottle and thus the hose will go into the bottle. If the hose is too thin, this DIY project will not work.
  2. The hose will be wider than the mouth of the bottle in which case, the bottle will go into the hose. This is the best scenario for our purposes.
  3. The hose and the mouth of the bottle will be the same diameter in which case we must procure a different hose or a different bottle.

FINAL ASSEMBLY: The final assembly should look like this

ANALYSIS. This is just a concept for now. It is possible that water may leak at either the top or bottom of the spike. This should not really be a major setback as long the leak is small. It is also possible that the bottle may not stay attached to the garden hose. Lastly, it is conceivable that this is a big waste of time and that I’d be better off shelling $9.99 American and getting factory made spikes. But then, what would be the fun on that?

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2 Responses to “DIY Watering Spike – Theory”

  1. Gardener on Sherlock Street Says:

    Your illustrations are good. Are you going to bury the whole hose and the opening of the bottle? I just wonder if your hose is stiff enought to hold the bottle upright. Can’t wait to see one constructed. Good luck.

  2. Jimmy Says:

    So the garden hose thing got me going. I’ve got a flower bed with a few above ground planters. It’s going to be above 95f all week if not for the rest of the summer. I am thinking of putting a gatorade bottle every 2-6 feet, with a hose strung through(like a giant garden necklace) with holes drilled in the sides and cap. Burying this “necklace” roughly an inch below the soil, with bottles turned upright(and drilled accordingly) into my above ground planters. With one end of the hose to accept my regular garden hose and the opposite end with a drip hose cap. So now I can hook up my rain barrel and let gravity do the rest of the work. Hopefully it works out.


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